Visit to Melkote Temple

Melkote is a holy place situated in Pandavapura Taluk of Mandya District of Karnataka.  Melkote is also known as Thirunarayanapuram.  This is built on the stony hills and is known as Yadugiri, Yadushailadeepa, and Yaadavagiri, overseeing the Cauvery basin, which is 1094 m (3589 feet) far above the sea level.  This is the place of origin for Mandhyam Iyengar and has acquired significance due to its 1000 year history.

How to Reach Melkote

Bangalore to Melkote temple distance is 135 kilometers.  The duration is 2 hours 45 minutes.  You can reach Melkote from Bangalore by car, bike, cabs by traveling on the Bangalore Mysore State Highway SH17, Karnataka.  Plenty of trains are available from Bangalore to Mandya and then need to commute through bus, cabs to reach the destination.  Bangalore to Melkote direct buses is also available.  Melkote to Mysore distance is 52 km.

Best time to visit is throughout the year.

Melkote temple timings are as below;

Sri Cheluvanarayana Swamy Temple, Melukote

Sri Yoganarasimha Swamy Temple Darshana Timings –
9:30 A.M. to 1:30 P.M.
5:30 P.M. to 8:00 P.M.

Special Days [Saturday, Sunday & Govt Holidays] –
7:30 A.M. to 1:30 P.M.
3:30 P.M. to 6:00 P.M.
7:00 P.M. to 8:00 P.M.

Sri Cheluvanarayana Swamy Temple Darshana Timings –
7:30 A.M. to 1:00 P.M.
4:00 P.M. to 6:00 P.M.
7:00 P.M. to 8:00 P.M.

History of Melkote

Melkote Cheluvanarayana Swamy temple has an extensive history dating back to Kritha Yuga which was termed as Vedadri.  In Thretha Yuga it was termed as Narayanadri.  In Dwapara Yuga was termed as Yadavadri. The principal deity Cheluvanarayana is said to have been worshipped by Sri Krishna and Balarama in Dwapara Yuga.  In Kali Yuga, Acharya Sri Ramanuja reinstated the deity and the location seemed to be identified as Yathisaila.  Melkote is compared to the well-known Badarinath and is termed as Dakshina Badari Kshetra and also as South Badari.

Lord Narasimha temple is located on the top of the Yadugiri hills.  Due to Lord Narasimha sitting in yogic posture, this deity is termed as Yoga Narasimha.  In the Satya Yuga, Prahlada, an eminent devotee of Lord, involved in meditation on Lord Narasimha on this hill, from which he got the deity of Yoga Narasimha.  It is considered that the picture of Yoga Narasimha at Melkote is installed by Prahlada himself.

The religious importance of Melkote is explained in various Vedic scriptures such as Ishwara Samhita, Naradiya Purana, Kashi Mahatmya along with Matsya Purana.

Cheluvanarayana Swamy temple is situated in Thirunarayanapuram (Melkote).  This temple is famous for Vairamudi Utsav or Brahmotsava which is a yearly event.  This will be conducted in March-April of every year.  This festival is a collection of crowns and jewels which are transferred to the temple for the annual event.  Melkote is also the place of Academy of Sanskrit Research.  There are numerous Kalyanis and temples in the town.

Initially, in the 12th century, the renowned Sri Vaishnava saint, Sri Ramanujacharya, who came from Tamil Nadu, remained at Melukote for about 12 years. Since then it has been turned out to be an important center of the Sri Vaishnava section.

Melkote is known as Thirunarayanpuram among Sri Vaishnavas is one of the 4 most holy centers of Sri Vaishnavism in South India along with Srirangam, Thirumalai, and Kanchipuram.

The aerial view from the top of Yoga Narasimha Temple is beautiful to watch.

Foodies,

Thinking of food, a mention should be there of the delicious Puliyogare (tamarind rice) and the tasty, yummy Sakkare Pongal (sweet rice dish).  Subbanna Mess is the best place to have the food.  Their timings is 7 a.m. to 12 p.m., where they serve breakfast and from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m., they serve lunch.  Puliyogare mix and gojju (sauce, ketchup) in packets are available.  The packets approximately may cost around Rs 70.  Enjoy and savor the taste of Melkote authentic food.

Spiritual Journey

After visiting the beautiful Melukote Cheluvarayaswamy temple, should climb the Yadugiri hill to visit the temple of Yoga Narasimha.   Climbing steps will be challenging which does check the fitness of an individual.

Raya Gopura

This is 15 min walk from Cheluvanaraynaswamy Temple.  The Raya Gopura in this image is the actual temple entry constructed by the Hoysala King Vishnuvardhana.  This place has carvings of temple, elephant and the statue of Yoga Narasimha on one of the granite pillars.

There have been numerous movies being shot in this location.  Films like  Padayappa (Rajinikanth starrer), Rowdy Rathore (Akshay Kumar and Sonakshi Sinha starer), Guru (Abhishek Bachchan and Aishwarya Rai starrer), and several others films.

There are so many places to be covered in a one day trip to Melkote, so it is better to stay here as accommodations are also available here.

Accommodations

Melukote Ahobila Yatri Nivas offers accommodation in Melukote. Free private parking is available on site. You will find a 24-hour front desk and shops at the property.  Apart from this, there are places available for accommodation.

Top 7 places to visit near Melkote.

Thonnur Lake
Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary
Srirangapatna
Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple
Brindavan Garden
Nimishambha temple
Sri Navaneetha Krishna Temple, Aprameya Swamy Temple.

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